Earlier this week Rachel became the latest Biggest Loser winner on NBC. But should the show have promoted her weight loss? The short answer- at least from my point of view is – NO! When contestants return to the show the staff weighs each one of them. This lets them know where everyone is at and how to arrange the weigh-in for more excitement. The contestants and hosts do not know the weight or the order, but directors know everything. As soon as Rachel showed up she should have been sent to a doctor to ensure her health and the producers should have gotten involved and figured out a way to help her and save the integrity of the show.
Here is a before and after picture of Rachel from the Finale:
Rachel before and after. Click picture for source
Rachel started at 260 pounds and weighed in at the finale at 105. That is a 155 pound, or 59.6% of body weight, loss. This also represents a BMI of 18. This is in the category of underweight. 18.5 is considered normal, so Rachel is close, but even being on the low end of BMI can be a health risk. For comparison the runner up lost only 54.8%. Not a single other contestant dropped below BMI of 21. To beat the runner up, Rachel could have weighed in at 125.
Without doing all of the math, one can see that Rachel is too thin. Here is a better picture:
Click for source
Rachel’s lower body resembles a normal and healthy weight. But above the waist we start to see the scary features. Looking at the shoulders we can see that she has broad shoulders compared to the rest of her body. This supports and should be holding more muscle. Down the arm, we can see her bicep muscle, but not because it has been trained and worked, but because there is no body fat in the area. On the forearms you can actually see the bony processes on both ends of her ulna and radius.
The drastic amount of weight lost and the look of her body lend me to believe she worked on cardio non-stop after leaving the show and neglected strength training. By laying off the cardio and doing strength training on those days, she could balance the two types of exercise, gain about 10 pounds, become a healthy weight and maintain her current size.
What I assume happened, and the key words are that “I am ASSUMING”, is that Rachel has some things going on in life that led her to eating and gaining weight. When she went on the show she found her inner athlete again, but by not actually dealing with her issues, she became addicted to the diet and exercise and lost control in the wrong direction. I blame this on the show and the people around her. Until she works with the right people, and I love Bob, Jillian and Dolvett, she will not find a healthy weight and lifestyle for herself.
Some people have said that she will put on a little weight after the show, and that her competive side is why she dropped so low. I do not agree and think that yes she will gain some weight without the competition, but the last time she lost a reason to compete she gained weight and ultimately went on the Biggest Loser. She has not learned how to appropriately exercise and eat, and will put back on more than she should. I don’t mean she will weigh 260, but instead of 125 she will reach 145. I think, and I just have this feeling, that Rachel is going to be just find and the right help will come her way.
Quickly I want to touch on the fact that people are raising a fuss over the fact that no one is talking about the people on the show that are still over weight. Here is why I have left them alone. They lost weight! And while they are still overweight, they are on the right track. In the real world weight loss takes time. These contestants have better their lives and have a high chance of maintaining their path and reaching their goals. They will also find their lifestyle will be more fun and easier to handle.
I love to watch the biggest loser, but I have always prefaced that with “I know the flaws of the show but…”. I still like the show but I hope this season wakes them up to helping these people and not worrying 100% on the contest.